One of my favorite Instagram accounts of all times is @tinkertots.my. This is run by a very sweet new IG friend of mine called Jess Lam. She has this amazing Reggio-inspired creative arts program in Malaysia, and let's just say she is a rockstar. The ways in which she provokes those children that go to her is just fantastic, so many organic and natural opportunities for learning and educating. In every picture she posts you can see that there's joy for learning.
So, I once saw a post of hers where her kiddos had made these beautiful heart pillows. I immediately knew I had to try this with my after school students which range from 3-6 years old. Since February is Valentines, I decided to do it as our Valentines project. Can't say enough of this activity, the children were so involved. We paired it with the book "In my Heart", to make it even more meaningful and that was a big hit too. Here's a step by step on how we did these!
1) Cut out your heart from the Canvas any size you want it.
2) Have the kids paint on it with markers all of the things that feel close to their heart, all the things they love.
3) Introduce watercolors and brushes for them to continue painting on the heart. Let it dry overnight.
4) Take it home (an adult can do this part) and using Hot Glue, glue the heart through the edges on top of a bigger piece of canvas, leaving a little space without glueing (about 3 inches size) and then cut out following the shape of the heart.
5) Bring the hearts back and have the kids stuff them with the polyfil through that little hole you left open. Once they are stuffed and fluffy, an adult can hot glue that little space that had been left open.
6) Have the kids decorate them with pompoms, felt stickers and puffy paint (ikea carries some great ones). The pompoms I helped them by glueing them with the hot gun because they kept falling off.
7) Once ready, put some Fairy Spray on it to make it smell good! And let it dry overnight!